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The Vampire Diaries “The New Deal” 

Photo Credit: Bob Mahoney/The CW

Well, well, well. That sound you hear is the Delenaites. It only took 54 episodes but Damon and Elena finally had a proper (and HOT) kiss. LOVED that it was on the front porch again, and that this time it really was Elena. As for the rest of the episode, good Lord, y’all. They’re back to warp speed. Not all great developments, and we’ll get to that, but definitely some forward motion.

We pick up with a brand new day, after the failed attempt to kill Klaus and Stefan’s “neener neener” phone call. We start with a dream–Bonnie finding four coffins in the basement of Witchy Manor and opening one of them, where Klaus is in repose clutching his mother’s/Rebekah’s/Elena’s pendant. At the Grill, she retells the dream to Elena, who’s had her own scary morning while out on her Buffy training run and bumping into a dude we later find out is one of Klaus’s whelps.

We also learn that Jeremy has been hanging out with Tyler, drinking and shooting and learning all things redneck. Set up at the bar in the Grill where he’s teetotaling but Damon is empyting as many glasses as he can, Alaric has flunked Jeremy for Googling a term paper and soon finds out that he’s also been fired from the restaurant. Then Klaus shows up, with the whelp from Elena’s run in tow, out in the open in front of God and everybody, threatening that he wants to know where Stefan is or else.

Cut to the Gilbert abode, where Alaric and a livid/worried Elena stage a dinner ambush for Jeremy and wind up having Tyler sit in when Jeremy invites him inside. Then Elena and Alaric tear into Tyler about what he’s bought into as a hybrid. We learn exactly what that means a few minutes later when Klaus is able to compel Jeremy to stand in the street because Tyler has been babysitting him to keep him off of vervain. Bastard!

It doesn’t help that Klaus makes this call while standing two feet from Damon at the Salvatores, having a pissing contest of sorts over “where’s Stefan/where are the coffins?” while Damon doesn’t realize exactly what Klaus is doing or who’s on the other end of the phone. Alaric pushes Jeremy to safety and takes a hit from an SUV (driven by the whelp) but the magical undeading ring doesn’t work like it’s supposed to and a) it takes him longer to heal and b) he has to have a Damon blood chaser after the whelp chases off the EMTs. In a sidebar of woo hoo, Jeremy heads to see Tyler with the crossbow and tells him he’s a jackass, and then he goes home, shoots the whelp and beheads him so Elena can get Alaric to the hospital.

Photo Credit: Bob Mahoney/The CW

Stefan confronts Bonnie at Witchy Manor and tells her the plan to conceal the coffins in plain sight via spell and essentially bullies her into it. Elena shows up and tells him about Jeremy and he genuinely seems not to give a sh-t. Damon sends her home and speeds into the house after Stefan and they slap each other around a bit before Damon takes it outside and stakes Stefan, who then comes clean about saving Klaus to save Damon. He still seems not to care about Jeremy, though. They end their chat with Damon getting in on the coffin plan as long as he agrees to keep it from Elena.

Elena makes her own deal with Klaus and has a badass confrontation with him where she tells him she’s not a key to Stefan’s emotions anymore because Klaus essentially broke him, which seems to surprise him. She gives Rebekah back to him and tells him that Rebekah knows what he did to their mother. Klaus takes Rebekah home and then restakes her just as she starts to come back to life but before she’s conscious, because he can’t have that on his hands now, can he?

Alaric checks himself out of the hospital before Dr. Fell (played by Torrey DeVitto a.k.a. Mrs. Paul Wesley) can agree to it and there’s some sparkage there so I assume she’ll be back. Damon goes home to Elena and she’s still freaking right the hell out after cleaning up all the blood (she’s red handed for the entire scene) and Damon talks her down. Then she asks him to do one more thing and stands tearfully in the doorway to Jeremy’s room as Damon compels him to head West for a new drama-free life; and Alaric adds, and Elena agrees, that he should never think about Mystic Falls again.

Then Elena continues her nervous breakdown on the porch and Damon comforts her. He comes clean about Stefan saving him but he keeps his word not to share the plan. He admits that he’s upset that he has to feel guilty again for “wanting what he wants.” Elena mulls that for a minute but doesn’t say anything and Damon turns to leave.

He gets a couple of steps away from her down the stairs before his “screw this” moment of courage turns him around and he decides he should have something to feel guilty about. He puts his hands on her face and sweeps her into a really awesome tender but toe-curler of a kiss before leaving her, again silent, with a simple “Good night.”

Indeed! To you as well, sir! I totally though Stefan or somebody, anybody would be on the sidewalk behind them when they parted, but there wasn’t, which made it that much more sweet and simple because, for now, they’re the only two who know about it.

And that, folks is our spring kickoff.

I liked that Damon and Elena know that Stefan didn’t completely blow the plan for no reason. I like that Klaus didn’t end the episode with the upper hand. I do like that Jeremy has been removed from harm’s way but I’d rather he’d made the decision on his own and that it didn’t involve huge geographical displacement. I’m disappointed it happened after he decided he would not be pushed around anymore. I liked that he called Tyler out for his dbaggery and that maybe it was sinking in for Tyler that free will was a mighty big price to pay. I’m glad they/Damon finally, finally, finally pulled the trigger on the kiss (which I thought was going to happen in the kitchen) and now the ball is well and truly in Elena’s court.

I didn’t like that Alaric got dead again. I didn’t like that Bonnie was sort of a driveby, except for the end scene with Stefan that set up the idea that she could be the key to whatever’s so damned important about the coffins. I wish we’d had Caroline on board for everything, and even Matt, because now, yet, again, he’s been abandoned by somebody else.

I don’t read spoilers so I don’t know what the plan is for Jeremy. I hope his departure is temporary or a misdirect. If not, I wish Steven McQueen well. He kicked ass tonight.

All in all, an excellent return. I’m in for wherever we’re going.


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